A few months ago we were proudly announcing the beginning of Sunday Bike Ride in Nha Trang and now we can say that this Sunday we will have our third Sunday Bike Ride in the former imperial capital of Hue. This city is a well-known touristic spot, mainly known by its magnificent citadel (despite the heavy destruction during the war) and the emperors lavish mausoleums, specially Tu Duc’s tomb. Next to the Perfume River, Hue charms any visitor with its relaxed atmosphere and low pace. As we already do in Ho Chi Minh City and Nha Trang, we want the Sunday Bike Ride to help locals and foreigners discover hidden aspects of the local culture, have fun together, get to know each other, admire some of the natural beauty around, let Vietnamese and foreigners know each other and of course, enjoy the ride.
On our first ride in Hue we cycled around the ancient houses in Hue citadel, where we learnt about the traditional local architecture. In Hue old houses are traditionally surrounded by gardens following the traditional Hue style. What makes some of Hue’s houses quite unique is the use of wood structures. These houses, ofthen built on stilts, are known as nha ruong and are built near the shore of the Perfume River. Despite its similarities with other traditional wooden architectures like the ones found in Japan or China, some experts claim that Hue houses are very unique because they use a triangle measure instead of the usual square one. Now, with fast paced development, they are being threatened and vanish little by little, but they can still be saved.
On our second Hue ride, we conquered Bạch Mã National Park with our bicycles. 40 kilometers away form Hue, in an area of 22,030 hectares and with peaks as high as 1,450 meters over sea level, this natural marvel is often overlooked by visitors who travel to the area. From the top we could admire a wonderful panoramic sight of Hai Van Pass, Thuy Van Mountain and the city of Hue.
And for the upcoming third ride this Sunday, we will put the stress again on the cultural aspect by visiting hước Tích Ancient Village. This is one of the oldest sites in Vietnam, founded in the 15th century. Those who join will have the chance to see some of these characteristic nha ruong built on stilts. Out of the 117 houses, 27 share this characteristic. It is the second most ancient village in Vietnam, just after the village of Duong Lam, near Hanoi. It is not very common in Vietnam to see such ancient structures, so you shouldn’t miss the chance!